Tony Ave Racing Becomes First Trans Am Team to Sweep TA and TA2 Class Victories in a Single Event Weekend at Lime Rock Park
May 24, 2015
Team Release - LAKEVILLE, Connecticut (May 24, 2015) - Tony Ave Racing and Ave Motorsports swept Trans Am's biggest event of the season with a pair of victories in both 3-Dimensional Services Muscle Car Challenge and Next Dimension 100 at Lime Rock Park this Memorial Day weekend.
Driver Paul Fix claimed his third consecutive victory at this event and Ave Racing team principal/driver Tony Ave doubled the success when hecaptured the TA2 division race win.
Fix, driver of the No. 4 Classic Tube/StopFlex/Car Coach/Royal Purple Corvette, dominated the weekend as the leader of the class in both practice sessions before claiming his second consecutive TA class pole of the season with a qualifying time of 50.340. The Lime Rock victory is Fix's first overall win this season. Adding to his three additional podiums, this weekend's victory closes the gap between he and TA point leader Amy Ruman.
Two-time defending champion Doug Peterson, in the No. 87 3-Dimensional.com Chevrolet Corvette, started second and was showing strong before an incident in turn one damaged the left rear and he was forced to pit and was unable to recover.
"Paul's three-peat here is just what we needed to build momentum for the team," said team principal Ave. "Unfortunately Doug Peterson got taken out by a lapped car, actually he got hit pretty hard, or we were looking at a one-two-three for Ave-built cars."
(L-R): Drivers Dillon Machavern, Tony Ave, and Kevin Poitras
Tony Ave, Director of Ave Motorsports and Tony Ave Racing and a champion driver and constructor, claimed his first victory of TA2 competition in the No. 70 Lamers Motor Racing Ford Mustang, taking a late lead in the 3-Dimensional Services Muscle Car Challenge. Ave, who logged a time of 53.940 in "Fast Five" qualifying started fifth and powered to first place on lap 53 of the 67-lap race.
"What a great weekend. This was our first sweep of the two classes," Ave said. "It went according to plan for the most part. I was able to pick them off one at a time as the race went on and our car stayed consistent throughout. I have always run well at Lime Rock and even though I was starting fifth, I was confident we were going to be in great shape. I really enjoy driving at this track."
Joe Napoleon and son Justin Napoleon, drivers of the No. 91 and No. 90 Camaro Turnkey Industries/CommState Bank Camaros, were ill-fated when an on-track incident on lap 9 caused an early retirement for both promising competitors.
"The Napoleons got tangled up trying to work their way forward and they both got the short end of the deal," Ave said. "Fortunately everybody was okay and the cars will be ready to rock at New Jersey."
Joining the field of competition with Tony Ave Racing, four challengers in Ave Motorsports AR-1 chassis race cars contended the Next Dimension 100 in the TA class.
Cliff Ebben, driver of the No. 36 Stumpf Ford/McMahon Group/Lamers Motor Racing Mustang, started fourth and finished on the podium in second place.
"Ebben looked like he had something for the two Ave house cars early, but at the end of the day he got caught out by some traffic and had to settle for second." Ave said.
Other Top Ten AR-1 finishers included David Pintaric, who was fifth in the No. 57 Kryderacing/WRP Investments Corvette, and Jim McAleese, who finished seventh in the No. 03 McAleese & Assoc./Jetco Engineering Corvette. Claudio Burtin, driver of the No. 7 Foametix Corvette, rounding out the top twelve.
The Lime Rock Trans Am race weekend television broadcast will air on the CBS Sports Network. The TA-class Next Dimension 100 airs Saturday, June 6, at 12 p.m. EDT while the 3Dimensional Services Muscle Car Challenge TA2-class races will be telecast exactly one week later on Saturday, June 13 at 12 p.m. EDT.
Round 5 of the Trans Am Championship, 'Weekend of Thunder' will be held Sunday, June 14 at New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville, NJ in conjunction with the Formula Lites Series.